How To Handle Your Performance Appraisal

5 minutes

It is finally that time of the year that we’ve all been waiting for – bonuses and salary hikes! But to get there, we need to cross one huge hurdle first – the performance appraisal process. A lot of us dread appraisals, mostly because we think that it is a one-way process where our manager rates us and we need to meekly accept the rating.


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Image Source: Linked

Some companies have a formal one-on-one meeting with their employees where they discuss the ratings and the reason behind them, what is expected of the employee, the goals for the next year and any feedback from the employee. While this is encouraged in some companies, it is not enforced in all companies.

In a study conducted in 2016, employee engagement company TINYpulse polled over 1,000 professionals to find out what they thought about their reviews. The results showed that employees are generally unhappy with traditional performance reviews:


37 percent said they think the process is outdated, and 42 percent said they think managers leave important elements out of their review due to bias. Nearly a quarter of respondents even said they “feared” their performance review, especially those in the millennial generation.

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Some people even think that if they approach a manager regarding a rating, the manager might target them for the rest of the year and burden them with more work! Others may simply quit the company. Whatever the reason, it is always important to keep in mind that appraisals are a two-way process. While your manager has every right to rate you, you also have every right to know the reason behind the rating.

Here are a few tips that may come in handy while talking to a manager:

1. Preparation

Before going for the appraisal meeting, it is important to be aware of your past achievements and not so successful projects. Do a small recap of what went wrong and how you think you can improve. At the same time, think carefully of new areas you wish to work on and projects that you might want to take up. This is also a good way to show your manager your dedication to the company.


meeting prep

Image Source: Linked


2. Handling feedback

Criticism is a part of growing and hence should be taken positively and professionally. When receiving negative feedback, pay attention to what is being said. Managing your body language so that you come across as calm and collected may also help. Don’t hesitate to ask for examples in case you have doubts. It is always wise to ask your manager for his opinion on how you can improve. This would give you an idea of what he is expecting from you.



Image Source: Linked


3. While asking for a raise

One needs to keep in mind the reason for getting an appraisal. It is essential to explain to the manager the value you add to the company and how the company is being benefited by your work and presence.



Image Source: Linked


4. Treat it as a part of a process:

An appraisal is a part of your term with the company. As mentioned earlier, everyone may be rated on a bell curve and it just so happens that this year, you fall on the lower spectrum. Don’t lose heart! Once you have the formal meeting with your manager and get his feedback, you will be able to understand your strengths and shortcomings and you will be able to set your goals accordingly.  



Image Source: Linked


5. Initiate feedback:

In case it has not been initiated from the company’s end, you can take up the responsibility and initiate an appraisal formally. It is your right as an employee!


initiate feedback

Image Source: Linked


6. Think like your manager:

Having certain expectations is natural but what would make it more realistic is if you are able to put yourself in your manager’s shoes and think from his point of view. Recalling past reviews with him would be beneficial in predicting the course of discussion in the current review.


think like a boss

Image Source: Linked


7. Prepare yourself for disagreements:

If you are appealing to your manager for a better performance review, keep in mind that there might be a difference of opinion. Try to keep things amicable while putting your points across to him at the same time.



Image Source: Linked

Do you feel unnecessarily stressed by appraisals? Do you have difficulty in putting your point across? Talk to our experts and see guidance. 

Swekriti Bhatnagar

Swekriti Bhatnagar is your special friend from YourDOST team. She is a Masters in Counseling Psychology from Christ University. She is experienced in dealing with adolescent and relationship related issues. She believes in the power of communication and that everyone has the ability to change. Through YourDOST she wants to help people vent out their worries and wishes to make a difference in the lives of people